The Las Vegas Raiders‘ fantasy football preview takes a look at their receivers who are trending in the wrong direction, while the Miami Dolphins‘ fantasy outlook takes the temperature of their backfield with De’Von Achane eligible to return to action.
Las Vegas Raiders at Miami Dolphins
- Spread: Dolphins -12.5
- Total: 46.5
- Raiders implied points: 17
- Dolphins implied points: 29.5
Tua Tagovailoa: As good as the Dolphins offense has been, it may surprise you that Tagovailoa has as many weeks this season finishing outside of the top 15 as inside the top nine (three apiece). There are some red flags to consider for fantasy purposes:
- Under 10 rush yards in every game this season
- Under 35 pass attempts in four of his past five games
I’m raising the points as a way to caution you for the future, not the present. Coming off of a bye and facing a leaky Raiders defense, I have zero Week 11 concerns. That said, the Dolphins get the Jets, Cowboys, and Ravens (in Baltimore) from Weeks 15-17, a potentially fatal flaw during the fantasy postseason.
On Monday morning, you might have the opportunity to sell Tagovailoa as a QB who is past his bye, has elite playmakers, and is coming off of a huge week. That’s a tempting package for a manager looking for a short-term spurt to make the playoffs.
Lamar Jackson and Josh Allen have not yet had their byes — a window could open for you to get creative to acquire either of them in a deal with Tagovailoa and another piece in the right situation. Keep an eye on it.
Josh Jacobs: This season has been disappointing from Jacobs after what he gave us last season, and, to be honest, I’m not sure it gets better in a significant way for the stretch run.
His 53 carries over the past two weeks need to be taken with a grain of salt — they came against the dumpster fire New York franchises where the Raiders were operating in a favorable script. Even then, remove a single run from those two games, and Jacobs averaged 3.3 yards per carry.
The role is safe, and the ability to find paydirt is a skill we know he has, so don’t take this as me saying that Jacobs is in any danger of being benched in fantasy lineups. He’s not. But I do think the floor is worth mentioning as leagues begin to approach their trade deadline.
With just seven catches over the past five games after grabbing 23 passes in his first five, the versatility seems to be fading, which just adds another path to failure.
I’m starting Jacobs if I have him; I’m just shorting his stock the rest of the way if I have the opportunity to do so.
De’Von Achane: All reports suggest that the explosive rookie has been setback-free during his rehab (knee) and should be all systems go for this week after a stay on injured reserve.
I’m not sure I have to sell you on what Achane is capable of: Three straight 100-yard games and 12.1 yards per carry this season. Yes, that’s quite good. #analysis
Now, those games did come against the Broncos, Bills, and Giants. Those defenses scare exactly no one, but the production is still off-the-charts impressive. The production isn’t sticky, but his 11.5 touches in his last two games might be, given the output of Raheem Mostert and the presence of Jeff Wilson Jr.
MORE: Fantasy News Tracker
This matchup very much looks like those three that Achane exploited, making this a tough spot to sell you on extreme regression.
I have Achane ranked as an RB2 and a starter in all formats. The range of outcomes is wide due to the combination of big-play upside and touch downside. I’m off of him for projected chalk reasons in DFS, but you’re locking him in for your season-long formats without much of a second thought.
Raheem Mostert: Through 10 weeks, Mostert is averaging 5.6 yards per carry and has scored 13 times. He’s been nothing short of phenomenal in posting seven top-20 finishes and a trio of top-three finishes.
In the midst of ALL of that production, he has two games with more than 13 carries and just two games with more than three targets. Achane is coming back this week to muddy this backfield against a defense that rarely creates pressure and can be systematically picked apart through the air (bottom 10 in opponent CMP%).
There are a lot of paths to failure here. Of course, a Miami blowout win is also a possibility, and that would allow both Achane and Mostert to produce in a significant way. With my rankings, I’m sitting on the fence a bit — Achane is a high-end RB2, while Mostert checks in as a low-end RB2, both carrying a reasonably wide range of outcomes due to a lower touch projection.
Jeff Wilson Jr. and Salvon Ahmed: With Achane back, I don’t believe either of these backs is worth rostering long-term. Maybe you want to hold onto Wilson through this week, wanting Achane to prove his health, and that’s fine. But if you need roster flexibility this week, I have zero concerns about cutting ties with either of these backs ahead of Week 11.
Davante Adams and Jakobi Meyers: Over the past three games, Adams hasn’t been overly productive (6.2 fantasy points per game per the Week 11 Cheat Sheet), but he has out-targeted Meyers 27-8 and seems to have reestablished himself as the top option in this very limited passing game.
I’m treating Adams the same way I treated Olave when we saw a return to elite target counts without much production in Weeks 6-8 — grin and bear it.
These targets are empty calories right now, and they may continue to be as much. But you drafted Adams with the thought that his talent could overcome QB question marks, and I’m okay with doubling down on that bet and viewing him as a mid-range WR2.
MORE: PFN Consensus Rankings
The math on Meyers is a little less optimistic. The quality of targets in Vegas these days is obviously low, which makes his sudden dip in quantity all the more concerning. Over his past three games, 42.8% of Meyers’ fantasy production came on a single run that resulted in a score. Outside of that, he’s been useless, and I’m worried that this is the start of a struggle that is prolonged.
I have Meyers ranked as a very low-end Flex option this week, next to another impossible-to-trust receiver who has enough talent to keep him on the fringes of relevance in Calvin Ridley.
Tyreek Hill: By no means am I sweating the dud in Germany to open Week 9 (his third finish outside of the top 25 this season). He caught at least eight passes for the third straight game, and I’ll trust that volume with Hill’s skill set every single time.
Hill has yet to be held under 110 receiving yards in consecutive games this season, a trend I think he can extend through this week against a Raiders defense that rarely makes opposing quarterbacks uncomfortable.
Jaylen Waddle: You didn’t pay up for Waddle this summer with the thought that, through 10 weeks, he’d have five finishes as WR30 or worse and only one finish better than WR12.
It’s worth noting that Waddle suffered a knee injury in Germany, though all signs point to him being a full-go in this spot. The volume has been acceptable (6+ targets in five straight games, 8.6 targets per game over that run), and with his aDOT down 19.2% from last season, I think his bump in reception rate is here to stay, if not improve further.
I’m of the belief that Waddle’s second half of the season looks better than the first half, and that starts on Sunday – he’s a strong WR2 for me!
Michael Mayer: The touchdown was a thing of beauty last week and showed some of the physical profile that this rookie holds as he develops. I’m excited to watch Mayer grow with time… that time just isn’t right now.
That score was Mayer’s first of the season, and it’s been more than a month since the last time he reached 20 receiving yards. He doesn’t matter in redraft leagues, and I have a hard time seeing that change anytime soon.
Should You Start Davante Adams or Tyler Lockett?
We saw signs of life from Tyler Lockett last week and that’s enough to earn him a start in this spot.
Do I think Adams is the more talented player? Yes, but the difference at the quarterback position is too great for me to overlook. Both receivers are lower now in my rankings than they were coming into the season, but if forced to play one, it’s Lockett over Adams for me.
Should You Start Raheem Mostert or Najee Harris?
Najee Harris has looked better of late, but this is a brutal spot for a committee back without the edge in the pass game. With Achane back for Miami, there is certainly concern for Mostert’s volume moving forward.
That said, Achane is unlikely to dominate the backfield touches right upon his return. Harris might hold a slight edge in opportunities this weekend, but Mostert’s efficiency should more than offset that disadvantage.
Looking to make a trade in your fantasy league? Having trouble deciding who to start and who to sit? Setting DFS lineups? Check out PFN’s Free Fantasy Football Trade Analyzer, Start/Sit Optimizer, and DFS Lineup Optimizer to help you make the right decision!